Take a walk in the UK countryside and national parks and you’ll likely come across a number of different types of birds, small rodents, and perhaps a deer or two – but did you know that there are places you can go to see wild horses, red squirrels and even otters, too?

The LeaseCar.uk team have researched and revealed a road trip that Brits can take across the country to see ten of the most uncommon species. 

The British Isles are home to thousands of different animal species but some are harder to find than others.

Whilst the country is most known for its hedgehogs, badgers, and plethora of wild birds, travellers also have the opportunity to see seals, otters and even whales and sharks in British waters. 

For families wishing to get a glimpse of the impressive Golden Eagle, they should head to the Scottish highlands.

And despite almost being wiped out by the introduction of grey squirrels to the country in the 1800s, red squirrels still exist in various parts of the UK including Cumbria and Northumberland. 

Even Basking Sharks can be seen off of the Cornish coast at some points in the year, as well as in the Scottish Hebrides – and they’ve even been spotted in Cardigan Bay, Wales.

We think that using these locations to plan your next road trip or holiday in the UK once lockdown restrictions are eased is a great idea – we are a nation of animal lovers after all.

If you’re lucky enough and travel at the right time, you might even be able to spot dolphins, seals, basking sharks and even killer whales in UK waters!

Other areas to see these animals include:

Red squirrels

  • Cumbria, Smardale Gill
  • Cumbria, Wreay Wood
  • Dorset, Brownsea Island nature reserve
  • Isle of Wight, Bouldnor Forest
  • Lancashire, Freshfield Dune Heath
  • Northumberland, Hauxley
  • Northumberland, East Cramlington Pond, Holystone North Wood, Holystone Burn
  • Northumberland, Tony’s Patch
  • Northumberland, Juliet’s Wood, Briarwood Banks
  • Perthshire, Loch of the Lower

Otters

  • Lancashire, Aughton Woods
  • Norfolk, Ranworth Broad
  • Staffordshire, Wolsley Centre
  • Devon, Cricklepit Mill

Wild horses

  • Hampshire, New Forest
  • Devon, Dartmoor National Park
  • West Somerset/North Devon, Exmoor

Puffins

  • Yorkshire, Bempton Cliffs
  • Aberdeen, Bullers of Buchan
  • North Cornish coast
  • Wales, Skomer
  • Northumberland, Farne Islands
  • Fife, Isle of May

Golden Eagle

  • Scotland – Mull (Inner Hebrides), Wester Ross Coastal Trail, Cairngorms and Findhorn Valley, Harris (Outer Hebrides), Islay (Inner Hebrides).

Harbour seals and grey seals

  • Orkney Islands, Scotland
  • Norfolk, Blakeney
  • West Cornwall, various locations
  • Lincolnshire, Donna Nook
  • Pembrokeshire, Skomer Island
  • Monach Isles, Scotland
  • Northumberland, Farne Islands
  • Norfolk, Horsey Gap
  • Scotland, Moray Firth
  • Cornwall, Falmouth

Dolphins (Common, Bottlenose, Risso’s, White-beaked, Striped)

  • Wales, Cardigan Bay
  • Scotland, Orkney
  • Scotland, Shetland
  • Anglesey, Point Lynas and Puffin Island
  • Cornwall, Land’s End Peninsula and St Ives Bay
  • Devon, Berry Head
  • Dartmouth coast

Killer whale

  • Scotland, Orkney
  • Scotland, Shetland Islands
  • Wales, Cardigan Bay

Humpback whale

  • Scotland, Fife, Newburgh
  • Scotland, Moray Firth
  • Scotland, Stoer Head lighthouse
  • Scotland, Hebrides
  • Scotland, Shetland Islands

Basking sharks

  • Cornish coast
  • Scotland, Hebrides
  • Dorset, Lyme Bay
  • Isle of Man’s southern coastline
  • Wales, Cardigan Bay